Untraceable CakePHP Shell Error Solved At Last!

So after spending near 5 hours on Saturday looking for why my Cake Shell was not running on the online server, I finally figured it out.

The first road block I hit was with file permissions.

My web server was configured for write access to just the cache and logs folders inside of the /tmp folder. It turns out that the Cake shell needs to be able to write to the /tmp/cache/persistent. Also, the parent directory must be writeable. So I ended up changing the tmp folder with:

chmod 775 /srv/www/../app/tmp

Finally, the permissions error was gone, and then the next error came that got my searching for hours without respite.

I had written my shell app and tested it locally, ensuring I included all the needed database tables at the top of the class with: public $uses = array(…);

Everything should work now. Git push and let’s go… But no! Some new error message just right in my face.

Error: Database connection “Mysql” is missing, or could not be created.

The thing here was that I could not understand why I was getting a database error when my app was working online.

After so many hours searching on Stackoverflow, Bing, and Lighthouse I finally suspendied my frustration and decided to look at the servers logs.

Nothing in the logs made sense, I tried doing setsebool -P httpd_can_network_connect=1 to see if that would work, but that didn’t change a thing as SELINUX was already disabled.

Then I tried adding some lines with extensions config and socket path to the my.cnf file. That didn’t make any difference even after several reboots and service reloads.

Finally I remembered that I had dynamically set my connection in the database.php file used by CakePHP to choose either a default connection for localhost and a different one for the online server. Alas!!! That was it. Adding a condition after the dynamic selection fixed the problem in database.php

All I did was add this to the __construct method:

if (gethostname() == ‘Hostname‘){ //Find hostname using: $ hostname at your *nix shell
$this->default = $this->online;

Set debug to 2 in core.php to clear caches, and then changed it back to 0.

And that was the end of my shell nightmare.



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